Salivating Over Salazar

There’s a lot of discussion about what we should do about Danny Salazar, who had the most Salazar night with a 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks line against the...

There’s a lot of discussion about what we should do about Danny Salazarwho had the most Salazar night with a 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks line against the Rays Tuesday evening. I actually see most people loving to chase him and I’m not so confident about that. On one hand, his 13.50 K/9 is the highest in the majors with a 3.18 xFIP as his HR/FB rate has soared to 23.5% and BABIP sits at .383. Clearly, those will come down and voila! We’re in business. Well…not really. His walk rate is as bad as it’s ever been at 4.35 BB/9, groundballs have dipped ten points to 37.6% due to a huge increase of Changeups (his best pitch) that he either leaves up in the zone at hit hard or gets whiffs down in the zone. He’s inducing only 13.6% soft contact meaning that the BABIP should come down, but still stay over .300, and I’m concerned that we’re going to see a 3.80 ERA or so with an IPS still under 6.0 and a WHIP above 1.25. Yeah, the 7+ Ks per start are great and all, but are 2 strikeouts a start worth the big hit in ERA/WHIP on a given night? I legit don’t have the answer here and I think it depends on the structure of your team.

Let’s see how every other SP did yesterday:

Yu Darvish – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 9 Ks. Aces gonna ace. The Baseball Gods felt bad you didn’t take advantage of the Padres so they served you the Phillies after. The gods are generous.

CC Sabathia – 6.2 IP, 0 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. After starts of 7, 6, and 5 Earned Runs, I feel like Sabathia was just an over eager kid that wanted the rocket to launch NOW. I can imagine some of you streamed Sabathia here, I just wanted to note that his xFIP has been under 4.00 just once all season long for a single start, and that was a 3.60 mark. Yikes.

Ty Blach – 7.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Nothing like a 2.86 BB/9 through 34.2 innings and five starts. *Suit Man whispers softly in my ear*. Wait, that’s his K/9?! 

Andrew Triggs – 6.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 Hits, 2 BBs, 4 Ks. Triggs just keeps on keeping on, sporting a 2.12 ERA despite a 4.05 xFIP. I think that last number isn’t a true indicator given Triggs’ super good ability of keeping the ball down with movement that prevents solid lift on his pitches. Dude is allowing just 23.9% hard contact with a 11.0% whiff rate. Don’t you dare drop him.

JC Ramirez – 7.0 IP, 2 ER, 5 Hits, 0 BBs, 2 Ks. JC was the Call Boy for today against the Chi Sox and he did his job with a low ERA and WHIP…but this is his third straight game with a low strikeout total, collecting eight Ks in his last three starts combined. Whatever, he has three good outings ahead – Rays, Marlins, Twins – so keep rolling with JC regardless. Streamer Record 17.5-14-6.

Jimmy Nelson – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 8 Ks. Whoa, eight strikeouts from Nelson! This mus—*Suit Man whispers in my ear* Oh…I see…Blame it on the Padres. Suit man, you’re alright.

Rich Hill – 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 Hits, 0 BBs, 6 Ks. This was a DLH situation and while my heart said start, I couldn’t do it. I SHOULD HAVE TRUSTED YOU HILL. Keep starting him until his blister realizes it has all the power in this relationship.

Lance Lynn – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 Hits, 1 BBs, 4 Ks. Solid Lynn, yeah it’s not a bunch of strikeouts, but it’s Boston and you needed a start like this to get back into the groove. Too bad you get the Dodgers, Coors, and Cubs next. Womp womp. Call me crazy, but I’d be okay dropping him for an exciting arm like Karns, Triggs, Wood, etc. I don’t see Lynn keeping his head up through all three of those outings.

Dallas Keuchel – 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 4 Hits, 0 BBs, 4 Ks. Just five innings from Keuchel?! This is totally A.J. Hinch’s fault as he wanted to “save a few bullets” as Keuchel had 70 pitches through five in a blowout of the Marlins. Well that’s just stupid.

Jerad Eickhoff – 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. You were worried about Eickhoff right? Heck, I was. But those were three strong teams and now he’s back to the NL Easy ways. Okay, the Rangers act like an NL Easy team, alright?

Zack Greinke – 6.2 IP, 4 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 8 Ks. I give him the coveted Aces Gonna Ace, then he allows four Earned Runs to the Mets. At least it’s a near 1.00 WHIP and 8 Ks? I still love Greinke on the real.

Derek Holland – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. A PQS for Holland as he’s the poster child for TEEs in 2017. I’m surprised they let him model for Gap Kids with that mustache.

Eduardo Rodriguez – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 2 BBs, 5 Ks. Sure, I guess I’ll take this even with the 4.50 ERA. I think Edu is a solid arm in your staff that you don’t need to worry about at this point.

Stephen Strasburg – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 4 Hits, 3 BBs, 3 Ks. Uggggh, why aren’t Top 10 starters being all, you know, good and stuff? His whiff rate is below 11% for the first time since 2013 and its 10.3% is the lowest of his career. Still, I think that K/9 goes up shortly and better times are ahead, his soft contact is a career high 22.0% after all.

Kyle Freeland – 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. Boy is this bleghy for the fourth PQS of the night. Of all the interesting Colorado options, Freeland is at the way bottom of the list.

Jaime Garcia – 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 3 Hits, 4 BBs, 4 Ks. I feel like this should be the definition of Blegh. Garcia, you are officially crowned the Mayor of Belghtown. Congrats. 

Jake Odorizzi – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 1 BBs, 5 Ks. Annnnd Odorizzi shows us why he’s in the 40s and not 20s. Get used to this, he’ll have those solid 1 ER outings then show up with 4 ER and not show any emotion. Have you ever seen him smile?

Chase De Jong – 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. This is all the Mariners want these days, 4 ER in six innings. Just give me that 6.00 ERA! No wonder grunge came from Seattle…

John Lackey – 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 2 BBs, 3 Ks. Lackey, you’re killing me here. You’re fresh off a stud outing in Coors to give us three strikeouts and just 5.1 innings. Everything still checks out as a buy-low target as that 20.0% HR/FB is going to fall (2 longballs here…) and a 3.63 xFIP is closer to the real story.

Marco Estrada – 6.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 0 BBs, 5 Ks. I actually don’t think Estrada pitched too poorly here. Sure, he had a tough first inning and that home run to Freddie Freeman happens. I’d keep rolling with him regardless.

Tommy Milone – 5.2 IP, 5 ER, 6 Hits, 3 BBs, 4 Ks. Even with the magic that is possible irony of being a productive pitcher for the Mets while all their “stars” falter, Milone couldn’t pull it off. If that magic won’t save you, you know you messed up.

Clayton Richard – 6.0 IP, 6 ER, 10 Hits, 0 BBs, 7 Ks. It’s the wrong Clayton!

Wade Miley – 5.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. Remember when Miley was the intriguing add? HA Ha ha…

Jason Hammel – 6.0 IP, 5 ER, 9 Hits, 1 BBs, 0 Ks. 18 outs without a single strikeout? How?

Phil Hughes – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Come on a, a 3.00 K/BB?! YOU’RE BETTER THAN THAT HUGHES.

Bronson Arroyo – 5.0 IP, 5 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks. Weaver took a step forward and Arroyo just lifted his leg. That’s how he shrugs. That’s how he does everything actually. Pleasure to meet you Arroyo. *Leg lift*. They say it’s a demonstration of power. I say it’s a sign of a man that’s going to lose the GSQB 2.0.

Chad Kuhl – 4.0 IP, 6 ER, 10 Hits, 1 BBs, 3 Ks. Kuhl story, bro.

Matthew Boyd – 2.1 IP, 7 ER, 8 Hits, 2 BBs, 1 Ks. It was a Miley/Boyd matchup that got everyone just so excited. Has there been a better duel of lefties out there? But seriously, I’m still Boyd Watching and so should you.

Tom Koehler – 3.0 IP, 8 ER, 7 Hits, 4 BBs, 3 Ks. It’s rare we get the old “blowout + demotion” double blow for a pitcher that hasn’t been in the minor since 2013, but here we are. Poor Tom, you know it’s a terrible state when the Marlins staff is so poor and he still has to pack his bags.

Today’s Streamer

Joe Biagini vs. Atlanta Braves He’s been great thus far for the Jays and while I don’t see a Top 40 pitcher here, with his groundball rates and solid control, you could escape with a great outing for nothing.

Tomorrow’s Streamer

Jordan Montgomery vs. Kansas City Royals I know the Royals have been hitting a little better lately, but I still like Monty’s repertoire that get be a decent floor and sneak a win.

Day After Tomorrow’s Streamer

Nate Karns vs Minnesota Twins – Because he’s somehow still owned in just 25% of leagues, I’m allowed to call Karns a streamer. Probably the last time I will, but here we are. If you need another option, I’d consider Mike Clevinger against the Astros, but I’m not loving that.

Game of the Day

Clayton Kershaw vs. Johnny CuetoThat sounds like such a fun pitching duel.

Nick Pollack

Founder of Pitcher List. Creator of CSW, The List, and SP Roundup. Worked with MSG, FanGraphs, CBS Sports, and Washington Post. Former college pitcher, travel coach, pitching coach, and Brandeis alum. Wants every pitcher to be dope.

9 responses to “Salivating Over Salazar”

  1. Jimmy Two-Times says:

    Would you drop Lack for Nola? I also have Maeda, Severino, Alex Wood, Godley and Musgrove.

  2. ragnospam says:

    It’s crazy to me that a guy can K 2+ innings worth of hitters per start but still get pounded for an ER per inning. I think the HR/FB comes down over time but man you almost have to own Kershaw to get away w/ running Salazar.

  3. The Diesel says:

    Poor command is a very serious problem! Nothing else really matters a whole lot when you don’t know where the ball is going.

  4. Ryan says:

    To be fair, Greinke had only allowed 2 ER through 6.1, then gave up a 2 run homer in the 7th inning. Then he induced a groundout and was pulled.

  5. Joe says:

    I need to drop an SP to make room for hitter, maybe two, because of injuries. Who can I lose from these, Morton, E-Rod, Manaea, or Karns?

  6. Rasouddress says:

    JC Ramirez was quoted by Taylor Blake Ward as learning “How to pitch smarter.” He said that the strikeouts are nice and all, but he prefers to go deep into games on efficient pitch counts. I think you’re going to see a trend that you don’t want to see.

  7. David says:

    Hey Nick….Should I use my high waiver wire position to get Severino? You still like him for ROS? Continues as Top 25 moving forward?

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